The pace of Value

Every day, digital technologies are transforming business. How can organizations equip to keep pace?

Being first in the market with your offering is necessary to be successful in today’s fast paced economy. Fast followers may grab some of the market share from the leader, but the market maker will already have monetized on their offering. Truly innovative leaders have already planned how to disrupt their own offering. Like a chess match, thinking a few steps ahead yields more options for a winning play.

In a cloud world, technology-based product creation or product enhancements have never been so easy. Combining the power of cloud with slick development and product release mechanisms can ensure success for quickly introducing, enhancing, and shutting down innovative ideas. To succeed at this you need to be first to market, ready to fix what isn’t right, quick to enhance, and decisive on when to decommission.

The biggest challenge when moving forward with the release of new features is time. Releasing something before anyone else does allows you to stamp the market and provide a high value back to those sponsoring your work. Releasing something that everyone else is already doing, only allows you to play catch-up and has less value. Being first may also allow you to achieve more product iterations as you get feedback from real customers in real time. By the time your competitors catch up, you have moved onto the next high value idea and its development.

Develop and Release Quickly

Agile development shops are successful at developing and iterating on products. This practice allows for a close working relationship between development and the business, while product or feature releases happen in short sprints. As a developer you quickly discover if you understand the business’ needs or not, and you also have a chance to quickly make it right.

Problems arise when this is more than a development exercise; when you must get those feature releases out to monetize as soon as you know they are good enough.

If your IT organization is laden with process and used to manual promotions, you can develop using the Agile approach, but your new features will likely not make their way into the world with the velocity your business expects. Automating releases is key, and pipelines are a great way to do this. Consider these actions to achieve success:

  • Develop in close alignment with the business
  • Iterate often and don’t worry about designing everything up front
  • Automate testing and release of your features
  • Work in tight knit teams that provide new capabilities and support

How can DevOps accelerate digital product innovation? Read my next blog to find out.